Published by HarperCollins on August 8, 2017
Genres: Fiction, General, Suspense, Thrillers
The residents of Cottonwood, California are dying. Their causes of death are all different. The only one explanation they can determine is six-year-old Danny McCray. Young Danny has never spoken, not uttered a single word. The townspeople are certain that he is the cause of their deaths. His own mother is victim to a disease that is slowly killing her.
Then one day Danny and his ten-year-old brother, Sean, go missing. In such a small town, it's easy to lay blame. Sheriff Jim Kent has watched his town die, is aware of the rumors about the McCray boy. He's aware of the sense of relief in the town when Danny goes missing. It's his responsibility as an officer of the law to see to his return, yet he can't help but wonder if the town is better off without him.
This title is a unique mash-up of two genres: thriller with the touch of supernatural. The entire town believes this young, mute boy has the power to pass illness on to those around him. How much of it is just their grasping for straws, desperate for an explanation, than the actual truth? How long before you hear something, so often that you begin believing it yourself?
The underlying story is quite intense and heartbreaking; a father’s quest to sacrifice in order to protect those he loves.
While I would have preferred more development of the backstory, of the fate of the townspeople. A lot was eluded to, but perhaps experiencing it as a reader would have made it more plausible, more believable. There definitely could have been more of a chill factor to this read, rather that aspect sort of dwindled without much intensity. I found it hard to understand the townspeople’s feelings about this family, this young boy that had such a hold over this town.
That said, it was still quite the intense and attention-keeping read. I read it in one afternoon; quite a feat considering my attention span as of late. All in all, I this is a title I would easily recommend.